Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Monday started his inaugural tour of the significant Malwa-Nimar area from the poll-bound Madhya Pradesh by offering prayers at the renowned Mahakaleshwar Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Founded in a ‘dhoti’, he played ‘puja’ in the temple, which will be among those 12 ‘Jyotirlingas’ (particular shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva) in the nation.
This was Mr. Gandhi’s next trip to the shrine. He had visited the temple at 2010, a party leader said.
Wearing cream-coloured ‘shola’ (dhoti known as in temple dialect), the Congress leader entered the most important portion of the temple, together with state party unit president Kamal Nath and effort committee chairman Jyotiraditya Scindia.
The 48-year-old Amethi lawmaker performed the puja amid chanting of ‘mantras’ (hymns) by temple priests.
Mr. Gandhi’s grandma and former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, his father Rajiv Gandhi and mom Sonia Gandhi also had visited the temple in 1979, 1987 and 2008, respectively to pay their obeisance to Lord Shiva, say Congress spokesman Pankaj Chaturvedi told PTI.
Mr. Gandhi conducted the puja of Lord Mahakal (Shiva) for about 30 minutes, ” he explained.
The Congress, had this past year, stated Mr. Gandhi was a fervent”Shiv bhakt”. In August this year, he had undertaken Kailash Mansarovar Yatra to find blessings of Lord Shiva.
BJP president Amit Shah had seen the temple on July 14. He’d flagged off the ‘Jan Ashirwad Yatra’ of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
Madhya Pradesh, where the Congress is in resistance since 2003, goes to polls on November 28.
Throughout his inaugural excursion, the Congress leader will see Malwa-Nimar, a crucial region which accounts for 66 of those 230 assembly seats in the nation.
From the 2013 assembly elections, the BJP had won 56 seats in the area. The Congress had managed to bag only two seats, while you went to an Independent.
Throughout his tour, Mr. Gandhi would address matters in Jhabua, Indore, Dhar, Khargone and Mhow, and take part in a street show in Indore.
He’ll also address a rally at Ujjain on Monday afternoon.